Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Monaco, 2019

Monaco Grand Prix is “never exciting” and format must change, says Hamilton

2021 F1 season

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Lewis Hamilton believes Formula 1 should introduce a different format for the Monaco Grand Prix because overtaking is too difficult around the street track.

“Bigger cars” which have become “much faster” over the years leave drivers with “almost zero opportunity to overtake in a race”, the seven-times world champion explained. “It’s been the case for some time and in my opinion, it needs to change.”

Hamilton, who has won the race three times, says F1 needs to come up with a different format for the event.

“We’ve had the same format for years. It is the best venue. It is the most beautiful place that we get to to race at. But you already know that it’s never exciting for the fans.

“It’s a one-stop race with these hard, long stints that we get to do. On the list of difficult places to overtake it is off the scale, highly unlikely you’re ever going to get an opportunity to do so.

“I don’t think fans enjoy that. I don’t know what the solution is, but I’m hoping when we are looking forward to future generations, it can be a more exciting race for people.”

However Hamilton admitted the track remains as exciting to drive as ever.

“Practice, just driving the track, going through the tunnel, up into Casino, the whole experience for the weekend is mesmerising. And that never changes.

“The feeling of winning here is never any less. Every year is unique and special if you are lucky enough to get the opportunity.”

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After four fights with Max Verstappen over the opening races, Hamilton expects a processional race on Sunday.

“We’ve got a lot of tracks that we go to where you see racing. I think it’s been an exciting start to a season where you are seeing people overtaking and you see the whole field closed up.

Monaco, 2021
Pictures: Monaco Grand Prix build-up
“You’re going to just see a train, naturally, on Sunday. The fans already know that’s what’s going to happen this weekend however it’s still exciting to watch, somehow.”

But Fernando Alonso believes the races of today will be appreciated in much the same way people look favourably on events from the seventies and earlier years today.

“I don’t think we can compare cars and years, championships and driving styles,” he said. “I think those years were amazing to drive those cars from Monaco. I can only imagine how hard it was and how tricky it was at the same time.

“Now we have cars that they go 15 or 20 seconds faster than that time. So they’re still the same challenge and you maximise a package that you have in your hands. It doesn’t matter if you’re running in 1’30s or in 1’10s, at the end of the day is the same spirit into the driving and the same challenge to maximise that.

“So I respect a lot what the past in Formula 1 did achieve and how they were able to drive those cars. And now I think it will be the same respect in 20 or 30 years’ time when they see the races that we were doing now.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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128 comments on “Monaco Grand Prix is “never exciting” and format must change, says Hamilton”

  1. Well, just put them all in FE cars. Those were able to race here. Or F2 cars. Or Karts.

    Seriously, why do we need this “oh, we can’t pass” EVERY single time we race here. Well Lewis, go tell your engineers that you want a car that IS able to follow in traffic. And that you want them to build one that CAN be easily followed by another one.

    We all know the solutions. And then, aren’t we supposed to get part of that solution with next year’s new aero regulations (yes, the cars will still be big, heavy and wide, since teams did not want to change too much, oh the risk of dropping down the order!).

    With this call, what do we get? What does he propose they change that is possible but also makes sense?

    An idea like reverse grids (hm, well, after Mazepin spins from pole and the red flag, we can maybe have cars following Mick Schumacher for some laps until he goes into the pits). Or a lottery? Let’s make it 10 timed laps to see who is fastest? Or hey, do 5 x 2 heats with 4 cars each (in reversed order) and then quarter finals, semi finals and finals running just a few cars off the grid where they can change side of the track only in 2-3 designated areas?

    Or maybe we just put every driver in a car randomly. And can then cry as they crash out?

    Silly ideas enough. But again, what does saying so at the start of the monaco weekend every year solve when a partial solution is in the works?

    1. Only think where I am hesitant to agree 100%: I hope this is in answer to a question about whether Monaco still works as an F1 race instead of something Hamilton came up with independently (in which case: what was the journalist thinking?); otherwise: fully with you @bascb

      1. Somebody is deleting my comments. (@)
        19th May 2021, 22:44

        @BasBC, @bosyber,
        I shared my innocuous comment here, but I guess somebody took offence and wasn’t man enough to inform me :(

        1. Somebody is deleting my comments. (@)
          19th May 2021, 22:45

          @BasCB

          1. You know what? You think I’m him? You were totally wrong. TOTALLY!

        2. I guess the filter caught it @coldfly – happens quite a lot, there have been so many words that are deemed signals of a toxic comment by now

          1. Somebody is deleting my comments. (@)
            20th May 2021, 8:48

            Unfortunately it was not the f1lter, as I know the f0rbidden words by now, @bascb.
            Yesterday two of my comments were d3leted when I shared the fact that the used quotes were more than a week old and reported widely on other sites.
            It seems that h@rassing drivers and other commenters is allowed here, but as soon as you approach the thin skin of the editor, then you are in breach of the Comment Policy.

        3. @coldfly You probably criticized Hamilton or his minions which seems to be automatic foul here.

          1. I mocked his 2021 contract extension for taking so long…and it wasn’t gone.

          2. Somebody is deleting my comments. (@)
            21st May 2021, 16:09

            ;) @balue
            I’ve criticised many people here (albeit tried to argue why as much as possible) and also you and I disagreed at times.
            I find it extremely oversensitive though of the person in charge to delete many of my comments only because I questioned some editorial choices (presenting old quotes as new news and/or use cl1ckbait headings).
            Don’t publish a webblog if you don’t have a thick skin, or at least switch off the comment function.

          3. @coldfly I think in this case your comment went together with a purge of comments in this section including mine following a Hamilton fan racist comment and criticism thereof. Don’t forget it’s the view of the owner that just questioning Hamilton is a sign of pathological hatred, so this is a sensitive area for him. https://www.racefans.net/2021/04/26/hamilton-didnt-break-the-rules-by-reversing-shouldnt-be-a-story/

            These are the only type of comments I’ve seen deleted here, except Hazel Southwell who will delete comments just to win arguments she’s in.

    2. Samuel (@samuelbeach1)
      19th May 2021, 15:12

      Yes Monaco may produce generally dull racing but it’s a track that rewards bravery, a track where the driver can make the difference. The sight of F1 cars flying through the streets of Monaco is something to behold. Yes, the races can be dull but it’s a standalone event in a calendar with 22 other race tracks. To me this is something to celebrate, and the chance to see these cars on the limit, threading the needle between the barriers is worth the lack of overtaking, especially the highway DRS passes that occur on so many other tracks. I don’t need constant passing and re-passing to appreciate the spectacle of these magnificent drivers and machines, it’s a shame that so many other people do.

      Reply moderated
      1. Beautifully said!

      2. Very nicely written @samuelbeach1! Watching Monaco onboards truly makes me really appreciate the talent of the drivers, they look properly sketchy.

      3. Comment of the day. Cheers!

      4. Agreed, I have been to many F1 races, but Monaco is one of the most memorable tracks. You are so close to the action while on other tracks you basically see a car in the distance.

    3. When are they going to say something about it? When they are going to race in Bahrein or Imola? if you are going to say something about Monaco it has to be during the week before the race. And reverse grid doesn’t work like that it’s not the 20th goes first just see how f2 and f3 do it and if they do a reverse grid in Monaco more than like the winner will come from one of the top 3 like usually. I do agree that more that likely mazepin is not going to finish this weekend GP

      Reply moderated
      1. ryanoceros666
        19th May 2021, 17:56

        Reverse grid at Monaco is a terrible idea for F1. There needs to be opportunities for overtaking for the format to work at all. It also works a lot better in one design formats.

        Regarding Mazepin I suspect he will crash out in the first few laps or he will be lapped 4 or 5 times.

  2. For me the solution is that the behind car can enable DRS freely if it is in 1 second distance, without zones or anything.
    This just for Monaco.

    1. Once again, moaning with no solution.

      1. So… we do it? Take the risk, or just follow amd stay behind? That is exciting.

        1. @cdfemke Everything has a limit. How much risk is worth taking or not.

  3. Driving this track on F1 games on a pad or controller, which is how i play the f1 games, is just literally the ultimate test of concentration. I can’t imagine driving it in real life and at such speeds. The race in 2018 was the only time I fell asleep ever since I have started watching every race of the sport in 2011. I honestly don’t know what we can do to make this a better spectacle. Maybe if I watch the race live on track, I might not get bored, but if you watch at home on any electronic device, you can get bored. I mean… Ricciardo was able to defend from Vettel in 2018 even though he was 4-6 seconds off the potential pace he could have driven.

    I think we should keep this track as it is, to not take away its characteristics. In addition, not every race needs to have wheel to wheel battles, making this track unique. I don’t think changing the format can help.

    1. It was a great race imo, unusual to see a red bull ahead in 2018, and ricciardo was there on pace, then had the mgu issue, I’ve certainly seen more boring races than that, and it’s very unusual that it’s so hard to overtake, so I like a change, rather than breezing past with drs in every track.

      1. I did not get bored because a Red Bull was leading. I got bored because of the ultra slow pace they were driving. I think it was the tyres causing the problems in the second stint. I was surprised to see drivers going 1-3 seconds off compared to their laptimes in the first stint.

  4. He’s right that it is never a great race in a conventional sense. But it is extreme and unique. That’s why I’d hate to see it change.

    Plus, it’s not always a boring race. We had huge dramas in ’15 and ’16. And ’19 had its moments. There are worse tracks.

    1. I agree Keith, I think Monaco mostly does offer an interesting challenge quite different from most other F1 tracks.

      1. Jonathan Parkin
        19th May 2021, 15:06

        And in 1996. That was completely mental. The following year in the rain was good too

        1. someone or something
          19th May 2021, 17:05

          Yeah, 1997 wasn’t too shabby, either. Even when no one was fighting for position, just watching them try to keep it out of the barriers was entertaining enough.

          We obviously don’t need 5 Monaco clones per season, but its uniqueness (in almost every respect) is a key ingredient to having a balanced and diverse calendar.

        2. Also 1982, 1984, 1992 and more recently 2008 which was the highest rated Monaco race since RtR was introduced.

    2. @keithcollantine Agreed. And I just can’t think of a different format that would change it, just as LH hasn’t anything to offer on that front. It just depends on the year and whatever happens happens, and other than that there are new cars coming, which may not make much difference at this particular venue, but I think should add more possibilities to the ‘worse tracks’ of which you speak as well as the better tracks.

    3. Exactly.
      I would agree 100 % with Hamilton if he was talking about any other event if the year. A lot of races are boring and need changes (hopefully new rules will help).
      But this is Monaco. It’s always been like that and it’s a one off. Leave it as it is.
      Plus : Qualifying is mind-blowing

      1. @roadrunner Exactly! The quali is more important than anywhere else, but it is also the scariest one on the calendar and the drivers can make a real difference.

      2. @roadrunner Agree about qualifying. And though the racing seems useless (nonexistent), it’s actually usually still absorbing to watch. I agree there are better targets on the ‘delete’ list.

    4. Hector Palacios
      19th May 2021, 17:40

      I rather watch a Monaco race a thousand times over Barcelona or Singapore.

      Reply moderated
      1. Same here.
        Things can happen in Monaco, you never know if they will, but when they do they’re usually quite spectacular. We’re talking about Monaco now so my memory is obviously being very selective, but to me Leclerc’s driving (ultimately backfiring) in 2019 was one of the highlights of that whole season.

        I don’t think the F1 powers quite understand what Hitchcock have taught the world ages ago, and that is quite amazing to me. No “guaranteed overtake” somehow makes a racing situation undesirable.. Amazing. Am I the only one who thinks the exact opposite? I mean, guaranteeing overtakes is basically quickly sorting the field in performance order, which is what F1’s other blindfolded head is trying to avoid… but maybe I am missing something.

    5. They could mandate more than one pit stop. That would give greater overtaking opportunities.

      They could have 2 shorter races. The first 7 and last 7 laps are good at Monaco. The rest is boring apart from the pit stops.

      Reply moderated
    6. And Mazepin likely to stirr things up a bit

    1. Or maybe they could try those fancy electric rollers that go up to 100 kmh or something!

  5. I agree with Lewis but would only want to see minor changes to avoid spoiling the tradition of the main event.

    Some Monaco-specific rule changes could include:
    – requirement to use all three tire compounds necessitating a 2-stop race, opening up strategic options and forcing drivers to push more.
    – abolishing the top-10 ‘start the race on the Q2 tire rule’, giving freedom to start the race on any tire compound.
    – lengthening qualifying to 1.5 hours and adding additional knock-out phases. It really is the best qualifying session of the year and if they can implement ‘sprint-qualifying’ they can implement anything.

    1. @aussierod I don’t think those would be bad ideas to implement at all. Or at least trial. They sound exciting.

    2. @aussierod Abolishing the top-10 Q2 tyre rule is something F1 should do anyway.
      I disagree with the race tyre rule. Having to use two different compounds is already enough, and F1 could also ax this rule.

      1. The Q2 tyre rule adds another layer of race strategy and interest. It works, don’t change it.

      2. I agree, @jerejj . The Q2 tyre rule is just awful. Not only is it gimmicky because it advantages the drivers who miss out on Q3 and disadvantages those who make it, it doesn’t even work because the very top drivers get even more of an advantage, as they make it through on mediums.

  6. Race rating failures always exist.

  7. I prefer James Hunt’s solution. Stick the drivers up on the balconies, and let the great and the good parade themselves around the track to be seen. Because that’s the only reason they are there for.

  8. F1 cars are too fast for this track. That’s why cars can win even when there’s something quite seriously wrong with them. The appeal is just a social hierarchy, a lot of that based on heredity and the rest on tax avoidance. Qualy is amazing tho.

    Reply moderated
    1. @Biggus No matter how much faster or slower they are, overtaking will still always be as hard.

      1. Not in “slower” FE

      2. @jerejj I don’t think this is true. When the cars are slower with less downforce, it’s easier to follow another car. Moreover, the braking distances will be considerably longer, giving more opportunities for drivers to dive down the inside.

        1. @mashiat Firstly, the amount of DF itself isn’t the problem, but how it’s generated, albeit zero difference in Monaco. Overtaking in Monaco is very hard, not because of aero, but merely because it lacks space and proper length flat-out sections.

          1. @jerejj So less downforce will produce less turbulence, right?
            And more space can be created (effectively) by having smaller cars running at lower speeds, right?

  9. It might just be me, but I like Monaco, it’s a challenge like no other, and the cars look quick. If it’s just once a year, I like the change. I don’t need to see overtakes everywhere, I enjoy watching the cars right up to the armco, leaving a little rubber on them for good measure.

    1. Giving up a little race craft for a Pure precision and balls skills once a year? I’m all for it. And as a bonus , we get a brake from all that track limits silliness. ;)

  10. Agree.. Monaco is never exciting for drivers and never exciting for spectators

  11. Completely agree with Lewis. To be honest Monaco is only loved by the people that can go there, the purists that that still think that this is the 60s back when you could see exciting racing in Monaco and the drivers. And is even worse when twe are coming from Spain another typical boring race. They should make it an exhibition or 2 sprint races or something because I’m only going to watch quali and the first 10 laps of the race this weekend.

    Reply moderated
    1. someone or something
      19th May 2021, 17:15

      To be honest Monaco is only loved by the people that can go there,

      Nonsense.

      the purists that that still think that this is the 60s back when you could see exciting racing in Monaco and the drivers.

      Nonsense.

      Rated N for Nonsense.
      Dislike the race as much as you want, I don’t mind. But making silly assumptions about disagreeing people’s situation or mindset is just … well, silly.

    2. For one I never went to a race and probably never will, but I like monaco.

  12. For the record, I don’t actually mind watching the Monaco GP, even if it is mostly a played safe, track position maintaining, slog. I guess because the margins are so narrow, that someone getting it wrong can happen at any time and change the dynamic of the race in a moment.

    That said.
    I wonder what it would be like if F1 used the WRX weekend format for Monaco.
    Hear me out.

    Every year we hear the same comments about F1 races at Monaco. Yet watching F1 cars setting qualifying laps around the streets is one of the highlights of the year.

    So how about having a weekend of cars going in groups of 4 or 5, competeing on track against each other to set the fastest time of 4 or 5 lap races.
    As for the “joker”, my initial thought was a mandatory tyre change. But that would be a major disadvantage for a team with both cars in the same race. So maybe just a drive through the pit lane. It would give drivers a bit of a breather, and would also look/feel agonizingly slow compared to those flat-out on track.

    And since the focus is getting the fastest race time, drivers can’t settle on just maintaining track position. They have to push for a top time.

    Its by no means perfect. The final would probably still be cars stuck in track position.
    But then it would only be for a handful laps (rather than a full GP length); and maybe already being guaranteed 5th or 6th (since theres only a small number of cars in the final) would have drivers pushing more for that overtake since there’s less to lose.

  13. I’d rather have Monaco than motorway DRS passes in Abu Dhabi, the puzzling processions of Sochi or a soul-tearing Le Castellet weekend. Hopefully the 2022 cars will allow for better racing.

    I do believe however that the charm of Monaco has reduced due to F1’s love affair of street tracks. We have way too many of those on the calendar.

  14. pastaman (@)
    19th May 2021, 15:36

    Have some sort of qualifying tournament where drivers are seeded based on practice times and placed into a bracket. Award points for each round of the tournament that you progress through.

    My other idea: Remove Monaco from the calendar entirely. All flash and no substance, and only an excuse for people to show off their wealth or for people to rub elbows with the wealthy. Encompasses everything that is wrong with F1 in my opinion.

  15. Robert Mckay
    19th May 2021, 15:41

    Monaco is, on average, more interesting than several standard circuits on the calendar (Barcelona).

    Given that the majority of F1 overtaking is now DRS-enabled and most of that is boring drive-pasts, a race where overtaking is nigh on impossible and DRS has very little influence is actually somewhat of a novelty.

    And the element of Monaco that is most appealing is that there’s almost no room for error at all, on a race that lasts best part of 1 hour 50 minutes. There’s no car parks of tarmac run off here.

    I think all they really need to do with Monaco is mandate it as a two-stop race or such-like to make people go hunting for a bit of clear air and mix up the pattern of the race a bit. But overall I don’t really get the hate for Monaco, if it wasn’t there they’re only going to replace it with a dull-ish modern venue that we have plenty of already.

    Reply moderated
  16. I agree with Lewis. F1 cars have long since evolved past the point where Monaco makes sense for a traditional F1 race. The drivers tend to coast round well below their true pace in order to preserve tyres for the only point in the race where pace matters, which is during the one pitstop window. So since no one asked, here’s my proposed format to trial as a one-off to see if there’s a better format for this unique circuit.

    Qualifying takes place on a Saturday as normal. The drivers’ qualifying positions determine which of four groups they will be put in for a time trial race on Sunday; positions 1-5, 6-10, 11-15, 16-20. The 16-20 group will go first, with a timer counting down in the pitlane and the cars setting off at approximately 15 second intervals to space them out over the length of the track. Each car will do a set number of laps (say 20 laps) and their total time for completion will determine their finishing position within their group. Blue flags would need to be shown if a driver catches the one in front and be strictly enforced since every second could make a big difference to their result – so say an automatic blue flag and the driver required to move aside immediately when the closing car gets to within 2 seconds. Drivers can choose which position they want on track within their group (going out first, second, third, fourth or fifth) with priority given to those who qualified higher.

    The idea of this format is it would encourage drivers to actually push throughout the race as they would always be racing against the clock, and couldn’t afford to just back off because track position trumps everything. This would greatly increase the likelihood of driver errors and incidents throughout the race. Separating drivers into different groups ensures that track and weather conditions don’t dramatically change the results in an unfair way, so if some groups run in the dry and others in the wet this would not be a problem in terms of the legitimacy of results.

    I’m sure there are some issues with this proposal, such as drivers who qualify in groups three and four having nothing to play for unless there are DNFs in the top 10 – though is this really that different to the existing Monaco race where overtaking can usually only take place when the lead driver is very compliant or choosing not to defend for some reason? Perhaps there is some way of incentivising by offering a point for qualifying in the top 15, and a bonus point for winning your group or something similar.

  17. Well, it’s not as though there are many other F1 venues that serve up scintillating races year in, year out. Most places it’s too difficult to overtake, which is why we have DRS. At least with Monaco there is the possibility of a driver making a mistake that means something (rather than just having to drive on a different piece of tarmac for a moment, and possibly getting your lap time deleted depending on whether the stewards feel like it or not).

    In an era when F1 venues all feel increasingly similar (50-60 laps, long main straight with a hairpin at the end of it, a twisty bit somewhere, minimal elevation changes, huge runoffs), Monaco brings a different challenge. I’d rather preserve that.

  18. To copy and paste what I said in the Formula e Monaco article:

    I remember hearing someone (Martin Brundle, maybe?) describe Monaco like this:
    ‘If someone suggested adding a new circuit similar to Monaco to the F1 calendar, they would not be taken seriously, but they would be considered just as mad if they suggested removing Monaco from the F1 calendar.’ (or words to that effect).
    I think this is the perfect way to describe F1 in Monaco. Yes, the races are usually a procession, but it would be such a shame if it was scrapped. There’s something really special about Monaco, and while nobody would ever want a full season of Monaco GPs, having it once a year is the right amount. There are 23 races in a season this year, but Monaco is so unique, and in my opinion, should never be scrapped.

  19. Nothing will ever make passing in Monaco easier.

    1. @jerejj Did you watch the Formula E race yet?

      1. I think there is a difference between overtaking and boshing the car in front and everyone else around until you come out in front and leave a jigsaw puzzle of carbon behind.

  20. I bet reverse grid qualifying would produce some overtaking. Or some more excitement as the faster cars, which are presumably the front runners in the championships, try to force their way to the front to maintain their place in the championship. Only half joking.

  21. I kinda like the idea of dropping the circuit from the championship altogether – but in the absence of that reality, I’d also like to see every car mandated to drive through the pit lane, say, 4 times throughout the race.
    It’s entirely up to them if they pit for tyres or not – but if they do, it will only cost them a handful of seconds (net) rather than 20-25 seconds.

    We can’t make the cars smaller or reduce their performance gaps or make the track any better for racing – but this would at least open up strategic options. Might also encourage drivers to push a little harder, as they would never know exactly when their rivals will pit, or how long they will be in the lane. And the more times this happens, the less predictable it becomes – or at least, the later into the race the result is clear – particularly in the mid-field.

    1. Not a bad gimmick, as far as gimmicks go. It’s not very different from the existing gimmick of mandating a pit stop to change tyre compounds. It’s basically a joker lap with a speed limit.

      You may as well make a proper joker lap out of it and define an alternate layout with some additional streets. At least joker laps have precedent in motorsports.

    2. I fully support your idea, S!
      I love Monaco GP, but this love is hurting every year because of absence of strategic options and drivers just cruising around the circuit in the race.

    3. I have to say this is a pretty good idea for the uniqueness of Monaco. The only exciting thing about Monaco is seeing cars on the limit in qualifying. Your idea gives an opportunity to see this in the race, when cars are on different strategies.
      Of course it will never happen as it’s a sensible idea!

    4. ‘S’, whoever you are, I was halfway through that thinking ‘another stupid gimmick’, but no, that actually sounds quite brilliant. I think you’ve really come up with something there. If I had voting rights, I’d be onboard. Does anyone have Ross Brawn’s email address? And a bit of leverage on the teams? Call in some favours from Toto etc?

  22. In my opinion, sometimes the difficulty of overtaking increases the excitement. Think about 2018 race here. Ricciardo suffered from massive loss of power and in one point four drivers were in queue behind him. Every lap had to see whether Vettel is close enough in the beginning of fastest sections (tunnel, s/f straight) close enough to make an attempt.

    Or 2011 before late-race red flag. Vettel with tyres in much worse condition than Alonso and Button who were catching him. Then out of nowhere there was a huge train of cars ahead and in half a lap huge crash which caused the race to be halted for a while.

    1. @bleu yes, this is very true. The 2011 race was an absolute cracker and could have been one of the all time great races without that red flag. And the most famous example is probably 1992, with Mansell unable to pass Senna.

    2. Or even better, Ricciardo chasing down Hamilton in 2016 after RBR messed up his pit stop. The pressure was incredible & the intensity of those laps.

  23. “It’s a one-stop race with these hard, long stints that we get to do. ” So, change the tyres. Make them rock hard (sliding all over the place) or super soft, making them last 1/3 of the race.

  24. I actually agree with him for a change. It is an overly celebratized track that produces terrible racing.

  25. Monaco is as uninteresting as Spain. It’s the worst couple of races on the calendar for quite some time. More of a chore to watch it than anything else.

  26. Monaco is not a race it’s a parade, and for the event should remove all points for the WDC and WCC.

  27. I don’t think there should be any special format to improve racing there, but simple measures could produce better outcomes:

    – Bringing to the weekend the most demanding compounds in the long run, or either bringing together C1 and C5 could be something.

    – Simply moving the race on the calendar to a spot with raining season. Wet races at Monaco are among the best ever.

    – A costly one, but still a possibility: moving Nouvelle Chicane further ahead could do the trick.

    – Another costly one, moving the pits to the Piscine complex, re-utilizing classic Start-Finish straight and the Gasometre hairpin, with the pit exit rejoining from Anthony Noghes.

    1. Great ideas, Niefer! Sad, that these ideas are not heard by those who organize Monaco GP race. :(

  28. Simple. Put together 20 identically prepared Ralt RT1 and March 78 Formula Atlantic’s with Cosworth BDAs and let them race.

    Reply moderated
  29. Never exciting? all Hamilton (Bottas or the 2 Red Bulls) has to do is to make a little mistake et viola’; a dull race is transformed into an epic one. Even a drop of rain can do the trick !! – anyone remember 1992 or 1996?

    I disagree that Monaco is a dull race; yes it can be a procession (like any other track for that matter) but there is always potential for some drama and an epic afternoon !

    1. Would that really make any difference if you remove the Merc and Redbulls? it’s just someone else leading the procession.

      1. Same would apply to any other track :)

        1. Except at other tracks we have overtaking, and not Trulli trains :)

  30. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    19th May 2021, 18:57

    I respectfully disagree and I’m not just going to go on about history or purism even though that’s something that is under attack generally in the sport. Monaco might not be everyone’s cup of tea but with a calendar of 23 races what harm is one ‘different’ race doing. There’s still magic about Monaco and I would hate for the pinnacle of the triple crown to be diminished. If you don’t like it, please just let those of us that do get on with it. There are 22 other races, this is still special.

  31. I think some of the Monaco-fanatics are being a little defensive. Your personal feelings aside, it is a bit of a clunker of a circuit. I love the track, I love “driving” on it in video games, it is fantastic. BUT, passes are all but impossible without a dying car, a huge mistake, or a flat tire. No matter your personal opinion of the track, that formula is not great for interesting racing.

    Aside from a huge Formula 1 shakeup (e.g. extremely reduced aero or much smaller cars), I’m not sure what can be done within the current framework of Formula 1 to improve Monaco, sadly. Since qualifying at Monaco is often a close indicator of finishing position—my one idea, which I imagine many people would hate, is—I’d love to see something like every driver qualifying with identical Porsche Cup cars. That might give a more mixed up grid. Honestly, I’d sort of like to see that at every race.

    1. And before people roast me for prioritizing passing, that’s not what I am saying.

      But when passes are basically impossible because of the width/aero of the cars as well as the narrow layout and design of the circuit, that is the issue, imo. Part of that is a bigger issue that F1 will need to address, making cars that are able to be passed. But when combined with the Monaco layout, it’s too much, again imo.

      1. I see your point, however for me a mistake from a top driver is equally dramatic as an overtake (again, we are talking about 1 race out of 20+) Monaco is unique as its barriers are unforgiving (vs the huge tarmac run-off areas of most tracks) – I would like a championship with a variety of track layouts (long, short, hilly, narrow, wide etc) I would much prefer that than 23 similar tracks.

  32. Rob The Rescue Guy
    19th May 2021, 19:35

    Make 2 tyre stops and one pit drive through mandatory and I believe it will make it more exciting.

    Reply moderated
    1. 100% correct, Rob!

  33. Tyre wear is always so low in Monaco that you’re guaranteed a one-stop race with everyone on the same strategy. The leader can afford to drive around slowly knowing they can’t be overtaken and anyone they come out behind after a stop is guaranteed to pit eventually (the same thing happened in Singapore). If the mandatory pit stop is removed however, the leader can’t afford to stop as they could come out behind someone who is going to the end. To make it even more difficult if only the C5 tyre was available for the weekend it forces the leaders onto a much slower strategy. Drivers behind will take the gamble on the stop knowing they will be seconds per lap quicker towards the end of the race, the delta may be big enough to actually get some overtaking.

    Reply moderated
    1. +1, and also refer those with long memories back to my comments on widening the cars back when. Also watch the Monaco classic races on youtube, I’ll look for the FE since it’s been reported positively.

  34. I think that what Lewis is saying is change the tire rules, or the parc ferme rules or something that will mix up the race a little. It seems he made a point of calling out that everyone will be on the same tires and doing the same strategy.

  35. I have always found Monaco interesting, maybe because of it’s limiting factors. I cannot say the same for venues like Sochi, Paul Ricard, or Yas Marina, which lack character.

  36. Broccoliface
    19th May 2021, 21:42

    Guy with the fastest car and best engine wants to change the format at the circuit that it’d be the hardest for him to go from not at the front to at the front. 🤔

    1. Guy with a 100 poles wants to change the format at a circuit where pole is king

  37. Agree – the most boring F1 race of the calendar.
    Outcome decided during qualifying.
    Even an unlikely event such as Daniels slow tyre change in 2017 doesn’t suddenly make the race more exciting, just disappointment to the driver and his fans that it happened to!

  38. This topic is so serious that it should be viewed (voting among fans, debates among F1 teams principals etc.)
    I fully agree with this comment:
    Keith Campbell (@keithedin)
    19th May 2021, 15:44
    I agree with Lewis. F1 cars have long since evolved past the point where Monaco makes sense for a traditional F1 race. The drivers tend to coast round well below their true pace in order to preserve tyres for the only point in the race where pace matters, which is during the one pitstop window.

    To sum up, the current state of Monaco GP – The Qualifying in Monaco is the most exciting, but the race is the least exiciting.
    I agree that the solution could include driving through pitstop more than once during the race. Everybody would love to see F1 drivers showing their REAL pace during the race!!!

  39. when he crashed early on and ended up winning the gp, that, was not exciting.
    Bring 180cm cars, refuelling and shorten the cars by at least 100cm l.

  40. Fred Fedurch
    19th May 2021, 23:00

    Monaco is a spectacle.

    Shut up. Get in the car. Drive.

  41. Once again we have someone equating overtaking with exciting.

    It’s heartening to see so many posts that support Monaco and it’s uniqueness and gives me some hope.

    Hopefully next years cars will indeed make it easier for cars to follow each other so we’ll see a heap of cars nose to tail pushing each other to a point of making a mistake or enabling an overtake (yes it’s possible to overtake with the right skill) which will only solidify why I regard this race as one of the best on the calendar.

    This is the one where driver skill trumps machine.

  42. The solution is… ¿solution to what? Monaco is the same place since 1929, near 100 years of races here, and ALWAYS have been impossible to pass. Yet, in some races, some drivers actually PASSED other drivers, so no, it’s not impossible. I remember David Coulthard with a dominant McLaren being unable to pass Enrique Bernoldi for more than 50 laps (i don’t remember the year, but it was some 20 years ago). This is Monaco and is a unique challenge. If all the races of the championship where here, I can understand the complaining, but is ONE race that is different to the others. One overtake here is nearly impossible, and this is the reason why every overtake here is EPIC and remembered. Please, stop asking 1 to finish or change one of the few different races in the championship.

  43. They should ban fuel saving here, so drivers dont have to go at it like it was a WEC race. Kinda like MS did when refueling was allowed. He did have to stop more often but was a heck of a lot faster by doing so with his light car. It made it interesting

  44. Might be the only thing in many years I can agree with that comes out of Hams mouth. This race is the worst of the year and there’s zero competition outside of qualifying. I never understood how such a boring race can be held up as the crown jewel of a racing series. That would be like saying Detroit is the crown jewel of indycar

  45. The simplest format change would be to introduce 1 lap qualifying. It might create a bit of mixed up grid

  46. Monaco needs extreme tyre rules of 2005 or 2011 to create excitement and pressure.

  47. As a spectator, Monaco is my favorite track/race of the year.
    The only place where every session is worth watching. Every driver needs to 100% for every lap, practice, qualifying and the race.
    The Hero/Zero point is so small I enjoy every second.
    Even in a processional race the drivers are posed with a mental challenge to remain on it for the whole race in case a slim chance of an overtake opens up.
    I love it, please don’t change it.

  48. Monaco is a driver concentration track yes. But i think theey can or should tweak it in a few areas. By widening certain areas. I know this would be difficult because it may mean to demolish buildings but then we do want to see attempts at passes and not just the usual train. Unless they let us watch the inboards more.. Thats the only time the race is exciting for me as a fan.

  49. I remember being annoyed when the car widths were increased from 1.8 to 2m wide that it would make overtaking at Monaco basically impossible. It was already difficult with the 1.8m wide cars, but quite often we would see dives up the inside at the Nouvelle Chicane—and both cars still make the corner (just).

    1. COTD – I’m surprised that I have to scroll this far down for a comment over car sizes. The cars are almost as wide as half of the width of the track (besides that they’re very long too). Smaller, more nimble cars would be a start for more exciting racing.

  50. I love F1, i really do. But I rarely bother with the Monaco GP. The “track” is completely, hopelessly obsolete for modern F1 cars. When I was living in Paris i went to Monaco for the GP, in 2016, and was near the turn du Portier, and the environment was nothing remotely resembling a race with race fans, with all the bling everywhere, the celebrities and famous faces (plenty of famous wannabes, too). Is too expensive for normal fans who need a salary to pay bills like me, and having the most advanced and expensive cars in the world going through turns at 60-70km/h in the name of tradition is actually quite sad.

    1. That is real motorsport.
      Motorsport is for the rich by the rich. Something to do on a dull sunday afternoon.

      Reply moderated
  51. Ok, change the format. Mercedes and Redbull start at the bottom. I bet my money a lot of people (most of them after complaining) would still watch the race.

    Hopefully there is a tradition to fulfill

  52. I’m inclined to agree with Lewis.

    The Monaco weekend is really all about Saturday. Sunday is usually a (very, very pretty) procession through its streets.

    As a challenge for the drivers I’ve no doubt it’s a tough circuit that requires maximum concentration. Unfortunately that doesn’t result in an exciting watch for us fans.

    The fact that it’s back-to-back with Catalunya doesn’t help as the Spanish GP is often also a less than exciting spectacle.

  53. it’s very simple, you either adapt the cars to the track or the track to the cars.
    Neither of which F1 has done in the last 20 years. So you get processions where its impossible to overtake.

    Reply moderated
  54. I really like the weekend personally, it’s unique and rewards qualifying. The race is usually quite dull without rain of course, mainly because they are not driving on the limit and instead preserving tyres for the one stop.

    My gimmick therefore would be to mandate only rain tyres to be used in the race. :)

  55. I couldn’t disagree with him any more.

    I adore the Monaco Gp, Always have & always will & not only think it should always remain part of the F1 calender & always be run to the same format as the rest of the season.

  56. Hamilton is right. From a spectator’s point of view, Monaco’s charm is only interesting for a few years after one has started following F1. Then, the only thing worth watching is Q3 and maybe the results table after the race. Even if the wildest chase is on, we can be sure there won’t be any overtaking unless someone makes a huge mistake or has a mechanical failure (Senna vs. Mansell is a prime example). In its current form, this is a race weekend wasted for a drivers’ parade fueled by nostalgia and glamour.
    From a contestant’s point of view, the championship needs a great variety of tracks to test a wide range of driving and engineering skills. But if challenge is a serious reason for having tracks so unfit for racing, then the practice of extreme-weather red-flagging could also be dropped (and FIA may consider having a race with icy and snowy conditions as well).

    Reply moderated
  57. Most boring race on the calendar, remove it or change something. End the race weekend with qualifying would be better. What is the point keeping a race just because of whatever nostalgia old white men can’t get rid of? Pointless race. Shouldn’t even be televised the appeal or magic of the spectacle wears off very quickly on race day…

    Reply moderated

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